I thought I was safe. I thought that my employers would take care of me during this unprecedent time. I thought my safety and health would be important, that I was able to work from home, while continuing to ensure my client’s needs are met. Being an essential worker, I knew that I was considered to be on the front line, however, how does an employer expect us to take care of our client’s and the company, while not guaranteeing that they will take care of us if we do get sick? I then start to question, am I overreacting? Underreacting? A range of emotions are going through my mind when thinking about being in the field, not being safe, and knowing that there is a possibility that I can get sick and not be taken care of by my employers. What are my rights? How can I advocate for myself? Will I be reprimanded if I voice my thoughts about my safety and concerns? These are all the questions I continue to think about. You would think that this can be an easy decision. But when you are asked to risk your health and your family’s health it becomes a different story. COVID-19 is real. It is serious. Everyone needs to practice social distancing and stay home to protect yourself and others. For essential workers, we are put in a situation that may need some time to think about what is best for you. Don’t be afraid to voice your concerns and work with your employers because there may be there are other options for you. Just know, everyone appreciates you.
Being in a spot to choose between working and staying healthy is probably the hardest and most stressful situations to be put in. However, during this time it’s very important to know the policies of the agency as well as how COVID-19 crisis is being managed. Knowing how the crisis is being handled is very important to help voice your rights to the employers. Everyone has rights and everyone should know them ALL, especially when employers are asking to put their employees on the front line of COVID-19.
I encourage anyone reading this and in the same situation that I am in to speak up. Be the voice for others because I can guarantee that you are not alone during this time.